Attems Pinot Grigio Venezia Giulia IGT 2015

Light yellow-gold with hint of green/copper color; flowers, citrus, apple on the nose; pear, apricot, apple, lemon-minerality on the palate.

The wine spends some time on its glera skins, adding the copper color and depth; pinot grigio with some skin contact is also called orange wine, although this vintage does not present the depth of color of some Attems efforts (particularly their Ramato Pinot Grigio). Dry, crisp; creamy medium weight in the mouth; very restrained use of oak (15% of the wine spent two months in barriques) but it delivers a touch of vanilla on the finish. Nice fruitiness, likely because of very little oxygen contact during the first four months of fermentation in stainless steel. Good complexity and balance. Works well as an aperitif, also pairs with fish, shellfish, grilled chicken, and salad.

Friuli-Venezia Giulia is in the top-right corner of Italy between the Adriatic Sea, Venice, Slovenia, and Austria. Although small, it is among the top producers of white wines in the world, especially pinot grigio. This comes from the Collio sub-region, a very small part of Friuli-Venezia Giulia, but the part that traditionally produces the top quality. Collio wines often have heavier body than pinot grigio from other areas; this bottle is an example.

Attems is part of the Wine Consortium of Collio—Consorzio dei Vini del Collio—founded by Count Douglas Attems in 1964. The Count remained president until 1999. He emphasized stewardship of the land and limited yields to ensure quality.

Attems Pinot Grigio Venezia Giulia IGT 2015 demonstrates the remarkable depth and deliciousness pinot grigio can achieve. Lovely in the mouth, supremely drinkable. $17-18

Attems website

Other photos: Attems vineyard with distinctive rocky soil of Collio; Attems vineyard